South Africa: A chance for children
As part of our project "Ilitha - rays of hope" in South Africa, children affected by HIV and poverty from very poor families are given access to education and health services.
People live in abject poverty
Around the port and motorway city of East London (South Africa), many people still live in abject poverty and numerous children in socially highly unstable households in informal settlements. With the "Ilitha - Lichtblicke" project, we provide holistic support for children affected by HIV and poverty in the school, psychosocial and health sectors.
Keyfacts about the project
Aim of the project
Children and adolescents affected by HIV/AIDS and poverty lead a life of dignity.
966 children & adolescents and 125 adults (parents); all poverty-affected, many HIV-affected.
Establishment of a learning and meeting center with a Kindergarten, learning support for school children and course offerings for parents.
Psychosocial and medical care for children affected by HIV and poverty and their parents; school breakfast delivery and out-of-school learning support; parent workshops on child rearing, alcohol and drug use, gender-based violence, and money management.
Keyfacts about the project
The project in a nutshell
Children and adolescents affected by HIV and poverty in the informal settlements and farms around East London, South Africa, often do not experience the parental affection, education, stimulation, schooling and medical care they would need for healthy development. They end up in their parents' vicious cycle: poverty - poor education - lack of work and prospects - alcohol and drug use, and even domestic violence. An environment in which HIV can easily spread further. SolidarMed, together with its local partner organization Jika Uluntu, has been committed to these children, adolescents and their parents since 2017 by helping to increase physical and mental health, improve children's school attendance and performance, and strengthen the economic resilience of households. In this way, SolidarMed is making a contribution to breaking this vicious circle and enabling the children and young people to find their way to a better future.
Support services in the medical, educational and psychosocial fields improve the living conditions of HIV-positive children and their parents.
Attending the project's own kindergarten helps young children develop their cognitive and fine motor skills. Providing breakfast at school prevents children from going to school on an empty stomach, thereby increasing not only their receptivity but also their school attendance. An extracurricular offer supports the school children in their learning progress. In training sessions, parents expand their knowledge of child rearing and are supported by social workers during home visits. In parallel, the children are trained in social manners through a "Manners for Minors" program, counseling services and organized recreational activities.
HIV-positive parents and their children receive medical and psychosocial care. For example, workshops on HIV, TB, alcohol and drug use improve their knowledge of these topics. HIV-infected individuals take life-sustaining antiretroviral drugs regularly.
In addition, adults learn to use scarce financial resources more effectively in financial literacy training.
More on the subject
Infectious diseases are not the only major threat in southern Africa. More and more people are also suffering from chronic diseases.